Gaspard de la nuit

Gaspard de la nuit

Maurice Ravel

Michel Dalberto's masterclasses

English 42 min Piano

Professor Michel Dalberto along with his student Tingan Kuo examine the use of the pedal, dynamics, and more.

Produced by the Saline royale Academy in October, 2021 at Arc-et-Senans.

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The masterclass

About this piano masterclass

In this masterclass, Michel Dalberto coaches student Tingan Kuo on creating the right atmosphere in “Ondine” from Ravel’s Gaspard de la nuit. Since water is a big theme in the poem this piece is based on, Dalberto encourages the student to visualize and emulate the flowing water while playing. This requires a stillness in the tempo and careful balance between the two hands so that the flow is not disrupted. He warns against the use of too much rubato and encourages Kuo to stay vigilant about rhythmic accuracy. Much of the music is marked at a very quiet dynamic; Dalberto demonstrates how to remain expressive and show contrast even within the most pianissimo markings, and highlights the importance of still maintaining a singing quality in the tone. Then, when the dynamic and expressive markings become more extreme, he inspires the student to adhere to them closely to achieve the maximum effect. 

What we learn in this masterclass

-Conjuring the imagery of stillness and water.

-Keeping a steady tempo and avoiding unnecessary rubato.

-Remaining expressive with a singing tone.

-Flexibility and equality between the hands.

-Paying close attention to dynamics.


  • Student:Tingan  Kuo
  • Instruments: Piano
  • Date:28 October 2021
  • Academy:Academy October 24 to 31, 2021
Michel Dalberto

Michel Dalberto

This piece is all about water.

Michel Dalberto

Sheet music

Aim for excellence! You can improve your skills with expert advice. Download the annotated sheet music of this piano masterclass. Please note that this piece has been annotated in accordance to Michel Dalberto’s feedback and comments.

Michel Dalberto

Michel Dalberto

Born in Paris in 1955 into a family with origins in the Dauphiné and the Italian Piedmont, Michel Dalberto began playing the piano at the age of three. He played in public for the first time at the age of five and a half, and at the early age of thirteen joined Vlado Perlemuter's class at the Paris Conservatoire.

At the age of twenty, he won the 1st Mozart Competition in Salzburg and was unanimously awarded the Clara Haskil Prize. In 1978 he was awarded the 1st Prize at the Leeds International Piano Competition. Other accolades include the Grand Prix de l'Académie Charles-Cros, the Prix de l'Académie du Disque Français, the Diapason d’Or, and the Echo Prize in Germany.

He has been invited to play in most of the European musical centers with some of the most prestigious conductors. Since the beginning of his career, Michel Dalberto has been recognized as one of the leading interpreters of Schubert and Mozart. Moreover, he is the only living pianist to have performed and recorded the complete piano works of Schubert. Recent recordings include the complete chamber music of Fauré with Renaud Capuçon and the Quatuor Ebène (winner of the German Echo Prize), the Schubert cycles 'Winter Journey' and 'Swan Song' with baritone Stephan Genz.

Additionally, Michel Dalberto is a celebrated chamber musician who has played with the world’s greatest instrumentalists. Parallel to his career as a musician, Dalberto has conducted orchestras in Asia and in Europe.

He was appointed Professor at the Paris Conservatoire in September 2011 and has a regular relationship with the Tianjin Conservatory. He has previously been invited to give masterclasses at the Accademia Pianistica in Imola, the Hochschule in Hanover, the Royal College in Manchester, and more.

In 1996 the Minister of Culture made him a Chevalier in the National Order of Merit in recognition of his artistic activity.


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